At the massive IBM InterConnect conference this week, over 20,000 of Big Blue’s fans packed Las Vegas’s Mandalay Bay to hear about the company’s transformative, three-pronged strategy.

The bet-the-company story for IBM: Cloud, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and Blockchain.

David Kenny, Senior Vice President of IBM Watson and Cloud Platform, explaining the ONE Architecture

While IBM still maintains numerous other business lines ranging from mainframes to middleware, these three Big Bets are truly Vegas-worthy – yet as with most of the bets in Sin City, the odds may very well be against the vendor.

Rometty Throws the Dice

IBM Chairman and CEO Ginni Rometty laid out IBM’s strategy at a packed keynote. “The IBM Cloud is the platform for the next era of business,” Rometty said, expressing the central theme of the keynote.

The IBM Cloud combines the Cloud Foundry-based BlueMix Platform-as-a-Service environment with SoftLayer, IBM’s public Infrastructure-as-a-Service Cloud.

But the key to IBM’s Cloud strategy is its reliance on AI. “IBM Cloud is cognitive at the core,” according to Rometty. “You’re going to want a cloud that has a full range of cognitive capabilities.”

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Intellyx publishes the Agile Digital Transformation Roadmap poster, advises companies on their digital transformation initiatives, and helps vendors communicate their agility stories. As of the time of writing, none of the organizations mentioned in this article are Intellyx customers. IBM covered Jason Bloomberg’s travel expenses to InterConnect, a standard industry practice. Image credit: Jason Bloomberg.

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